HOW TO: Tips for creatives |Working with a Makeup Artist

posted in HOW TO

HOW TO: Tips for creatives |Working with a Makeup Artist

After writing my previous post Simple Steps to booking a Makeup Artist , it got me thinking that I should write one for the creative individuals.

When it comes to choosing and communicating with a Makeup Artist, whether you’re a Photographer, Art Director, Stylist, Film maker, Hair stylist, Model, Actor (or just about any creative needing an Artist) in my experience in the industry it’s not always as simple as A,B,C.

Quiet often miscommunication can be the downfall in the making of great work.  Below are my tips for communicating  and working with a Makeup Artist (In no particular order)



C ollaborate– When it comes to finding the right Artist it’s important to ask them if they are interested in collaborating; this may mean payment in the form of exchanged services for their portfolio, If not always ask for their rates.

O rganisation–  Showing that you are well organised with a concept, mood board, talent booked, studio/location, call sheets and other team members involvement means there are less questions you will need to answer, Makeup Artists are busy too!

M ood board- As visual creatures , we love mood boards,  particularly detailed ones with clear references to concept & styling. The more references the better including examples of the mood you want to capture, styling/posing examples, lighting examples, studio/location examples and of course  hair/ makeup examples.

M eticulous– Be meticulous, the devil is always in the details, if you’re not happy with something and want it another way- say it! it’s better to be to express how you feel and what you want than to be left underwhelmed.

U nderstand– Understanding each other and what it is you all want to achieve in a project is essential, it is also important to discuss all areas of the project so that everyone involved is on the same page, ie. understanding what is expected of each person, if this means asking numerous questions then so be it, the more information the better.

N ever Assume– Assuming that a Makeup Artist does hair/nails/body painting etc is never a good idea, always ask first, some are flexible with what they will and will not do but it’s always better ask, same goes for working on projects for exchange in services, not all will do this and it is rude to assume.

I ntroduction – Manners cost nothing. A polite introduction to yourself, your portfolio, the portfolio of the team and the concept is always a great way to build rapport and ensure a positive, professional experience.

C onfirmation– Once you have agreed to work together it never hurts to confirm all details of the project to make sure everyone is happy, if it means repeating all details then repeat away, it’s better to be thorough.

A ccommodate– This can be tricky but remember you are seeking a professional Artist due to their expertise in their field, if you have spoken about the concept and they do have suggestions that work better in terms of concept , timing or capability then be open to accommodate this, having said that this does not mean to change or disregard the vision, there just needs to be a common middle ground that works for everyone.

T est–  Some times plans don’t always work out the way you may want, but remember if working with someone for the first time it is a test for both of you, with the right communication and team work hopefully it becomes a continued working relationship.

E xperience – Remember even a bad experience is still an experience, it could be down to various factors either in or out of your control, but most importantly learn from it!


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